PubMed ® for Trainers
Do you train others to use PubMed? If so, join us for PubMed for Trainers, a hybrid class with 3 online sessions and 1 in-person session (eligible for 15 MLA CE credits). The class is an in-depth look at PubMed and a chance to share training ideas with your fellow participants.
PubMed ® for Trainers
Fundamentals of Bioinformatics
The "Fundamentals of Bioinformatics and Searching" course provides basic knowledge and skills for librarians interested in helping patrons use online molecular databases and tools from the NCBI.
Fundamentals of Bioinformatics
TOXNET® and Beyond
This course is designed to convey the basics of searching the NLM's TOXNET®, a Web-based system of databases in the areas of toxicology, environmental health, and related fields.
TOXNET® and Beyond
Teaching with Technology
Learn how to take advantage of online tools to offer distance education classes and enhance face to face classes! Join us for this "asynchronous" (on your own time) class. The class is taught over 5 weeks and is eligible for 8 MLA CE credits.
Teaching with Technology
PubMed® for Librarians
PubMed for Librarians is made up of five one-hour segments. These five segments will be presented via Adobe Connect and recorded for archival access. Each segment is meant to be a stand-alone module designed for each user to determine how many and in what sequence they attend.
PubMed® for Librarians
Last week I gave a few tips for engaging your learners, based on this e-book from Shift eLearning. The final tip was to use good course design. But what does that mean?
According to Shift eLearning, “Well-designed courses help your learners to understand what they are seeing. When every element on screen has a deliberate function, and is in the right place, everything seems more clear.” While this is focused on the online learning environment, I think it’s true for traditional classes as well. Here are six key principles for good design.
1. Don’t unnecessarily complicate things. Keep the course simple with usable navigation and readable fonts. Focus on communicating with the user and making it easy to accomplish what they want to do.
2. Allow for inquiry and exploration. Isn’t it more engaging when you discover information on your own? Giving choices or trying scenarios can bring curiosity to the content.
3. Keep the content to a minimum. Focus on what they truly need to know and avoid extra information that can clutter the experience and get in the way of the main goals.
4. Pay attention to the visual elements. Check that your typography, color, texture, icons, symbols, pictures and animations or videos add to the experience and do not detract from it.
5. Less is more. This is a variation of keeping it simple. Make sure that it can load quickly and takes as few steps as possible to get to the content they should learn.
6. Mix it up. A variety of activities or formats can challenge the learners to think in new ways. Will a case study, game, or animation best help the students to learn?
Find several other tips for engaging your learners in the downloadable e-book!
The Refugee Health Information Network (RHIN) was a national collaborative partnership whose principal focus was to create and make available a database of quality multilingual/multicultural, public health resources to professionals providing care to resettled refugees and asylees.
In October 2014, the Specialized Information Services division of NLM broadened the scope of RHIN by rebranding it HealthReach (You’ll notice that the website moved from a .org to a .gov URL). This was done to better meet the needs of the diverse non-English and English as a second language speaking audiences.
HealthReach continues to recognize the importance of providing refugee and asylee specific information while expanding the information provided to meet the needs of most immigrant populations. Over the next several months we will be adding new resources and reaching out to stakeholders.
You can follow the new resource on Twitter: @NLM_HealthReach
You can find the new website at: http://healthreach.nlm.nih.gov
I recently picked up a free e-book from Shift eLearning, called Engage the Unengaged: How to Create More Engaging eLearning Courses. You can download your own copy, too, if you’d like. I’ll share a few of their ideas in blog posts this week and next week. The focus of the e-book is on eLearning, but there are lessons here for the face-to-face classroom as well.
What is engagement? Shift eLearning uses “the level of participation and intrinsic motivation student displays in a learning environment” as their definition. It includes both behaviors (such as attention or effort) and attitudes (motivation or interest). An engaged learner is active and collaborative, seeks out help, and exerts his or her best effort in response to a challenge. Disengaged learners may do only the minimum work, delay completion of tasks, avoid challenges and may not participate. I’m sure you’ve met both in your classes.
There are a few things you can do to increase engagement, and even convert the disengaged to engaged. Here are a few strategies to try:
1. Acknowledge the prior knowledge of your students, and show them how the class will build on it.
2. Tell them what’s in it for them right away – don’t assume that they’ll know why the class is important. Why does this information matter and how is it relevant to their work or life?
3. Build in some immediate rewards. I don’t mean candy (though that works for some audiences). Can you reward them with affirmation or encouragement? Can you demonstrate to them how they are already doing something better or faster or more easily as a result of the class? Again, don’t just assume they’ll notice – point it out.
4. Take time for reflection. We’re often tempted to use every possible minute for dispensing information, but allowing time for reflective processing can help students to better retain the content. Ask students to stop, think, and apply what they have just learned or take a minute to consider how what they heard relates to their work.
5. Use good design and quality images. While this probably can’t sustain engagement, it may help to initiate it. In next week’s post, we’ll look at a few principles of attractive design.
The National Library of Medicine (NLM) is currently involved in MEDLINE year-end processing (YEP) activities. These include changing the Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) main headings as well as Supplementary Concept Records that standardize names and associated numbers for chemical, protocols, and diseases that are not main headings. The MeSH edits include existing MEDLINE citations to conform with the 2015 version of MeSH, and other global changes.
November 19, 2014: NLM expects to temporarily suspend the addition of fully-indexed MEDLINE citations to PubMed. Publisher-supplied and in process citations will continue to be added.
Mid-December 2014: PubMed MEDLINE citations, translation tables, and the MeSH database will have been updated to reflect 2015 MeSH.
For details about the impact on searching from November 20 to mid-December, see: Annual MEDLINE/PubMed Year-End Processing (YEP): Impact on Searching During Fall 2014.
For background information on the general kinds of changes made annually, see: Annual MEDLINE/PubMed Year-End Processing (YEP): Background Information.
Our blog is just one way we like to connect with you! We also have Twitter and Facebook accounts. Here are some of our most popular posts from the past few months:
Take a break (22 minutes) and watch this video presentation by Victoria Brazil, a physician and medical educator from Australia. She talks about what educational modalities and interventions are effective in medical education. Spoiler alert: the answer is everything and nothing.
One question we’re often asked in our classes is how to keep up with changes to PubMed and other NLM Resources. There are lots of changes, but there are several resources as well. Whether your interest is PubMed, History of Medicine, disaster medicine, or NCBI databases, you can find a blog, Facebook page, Twitter account, or even Pinterest board to follow. For the full list of ways to connect with NLM, see their social media page.
In addition to the NLM accounts, you can also follow the social media of your National Network of Libraries of Medicine Region or one of the Centers (like us, the National Library of Medicine Training Center).
Finally, we always recommend subscribing to the National Library of Medicine Technical Bulletin. You can be among the first to know about changes to PubMed and other important information that may impact your use of NLM resources. They also have a searchable archive that can be useful for finding when particular changes occurred. For example, you can search for “bolded” to learn that PubMed began making your search terms appear in bold in 2011.
When you reach out to grab an object, neurons fire telling your brain to reach and grab for the object. These are called motor command neurons and have been known about (by those who know) for about 50 years.
Researchers in Italy (PMID 24778385) recently found a subset of these command neurons called mirror neurons. Mirror neurons fire when you watch someone reach to grab an object. These neurons don’t even have to do the actual action in order to fire, all they have to do is see the action and they will fire.
Neurologist Vilayanur Ramachandra at University of California San Diego describes these neurons as empathy neurons and believes they may be involved with imitation and emulation…“because to imitate a complex act requires my brain to adopt the other person’s point of view.”
Why is this important? Learning by watching and not having to actually do a particular thing has helped to quickly spread new human behaviors across continents and populations; leap frogging evolution. For example, the use of a new tool, language or the use of fire could be learned by watching and then spread across humanity. Ramachandran says “the imitation of complex skills is what we call culture and is the basis of civilization.”
Watch the 7 minute 45 second TED talk here: www.ted.com/talks/vs_ramachandran_the_neurons_that_shaped_civilization
What do nuns, surgeons, and transplant recipients have in common?
No, it’s not the beginning of a joke — they’re all new MeSH terms for 2015!
I mentioned last week that I love exploring the newly released MeSH terms. Here are a few more highlights.
In the information science branch, Common Data Elements, Data Curation, Datasets as Topic, and Printing, Three-Dimensional have all been added to the vocabulary.
Social Norms, Social Skills, Courage, and Craving have been added to the behavior branch, and I’m glad to see the addition of Military Family as well.
Several forms of elimination and absorption have been added, including Intramuscular Absorption and Lacrimal Elimination.
Palliative Medicine, Electronic Cigarettes, Culturally Competent Care, and Grounded Theory also made it into the MeSH vocabulary this year.
Want to make a suggestion for next year? Send it to NLM!
Health science librarians in the United States are invited to participate in the next offering of the bioinformatics training course, “A Librarian’s Guide to NCBI,” sponsored by the National Library of Medicine (NLM), the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), and the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, NLM Training Center (NTC).
The course provides knowledge and skills for librarians interested in helping patrons use online molecular databases and tools from the NCBI. Prior knowledge of molecular biology and genetics is not required. Participating in the Librarian’s Guide course will improve your ability to initiate or extend bioinformatics services at your institution.
Instructors will be NCBI staff and Diane Rein, Ph.D., MLS, Bioinformatics and Molecular Biology Liaison from the Health Science Library, University at Buffalo.
Online Pre-Course and In-Person Course Components
There are two parts to “A Librarian’s Guide to NCBI,” listed below. Applicants must complete both parts. Participants must complete the pre-course with full CE credit (Part 1) in order to advance to attend the 5-day in-person course (Part 2).
- Part 1: “Fundamentals in Bioinformatics and Searching,” an online (asynchronous) course,
January 12-February 13, 2015
The major goal of this part is to provide an introduction to bioinformatics theory and practice in support of developing and implementing library-based bioinformatics products and services. This material is essential for decision-making and implementation of these programs, particularly instructional and reference services. The course encompasses visualizing bioinformatics end-user practice. It places a strong emphasis on hands-on acquisition of NCBI search competencies, and developing a working molecular biology vocabulary through self-paced hands-on exercises.
- Part 2: A 5-day in-person course offered on-site at the National Library of Medicine in Bethesda, Maryland, March 9-13, 2015.
The in-person course will focus on using the BLAST sequence similarity search and Entrez text search systems to find relevant molecular data. The course will describe the various kinds of molecular data available and explain how these are generated and used in modern biomedical research. The course will be a combination of instruction, demonstration, discussions, and hands-one exercises (both individual and group).
Who can apply?
- Applications are open to health science librarians in the United States.
- Applicants will be accepted both from libraries currently providing bioinformatics services as well as from those desiring to implement services.
- Enrollment is limited 25 participants.
What does it cost?
- There is no charge for the classes. Travel and lodging costs for the in-person class are at the expense of the participant.
Important Application Dates
- Application deadline: November 17, 2014
- Acceptance notification: On or about December 15, 2014
How to Apply
- Please fill out the Application Form at https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/guide_2015_app.
- Once you complete the Application Form, you will be directed to download the Supervisor Support Statement (ftp://ftp.ncbi.nih.gov/pub/education/librarian_guide/Forms/Supervisor_Supportv2.pdf). This is to be filled out and signed by your immediate supervisor. This statement describes your current and/or future role in bioinformatics support at your institution and confirms your availability to attend the course if selected.
- Provide your current curriculum vitae (CV). Please use the suggested CV model as a guideline for the type of information desired (ftp://ftp.ncbi.nih.gov/pub/education/librarian_guide/Forms/LibGuide_CV_model.pdf).
The course page with additional information is at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/education/librarian/
Please direct any questions to: email@example.com